The Noisy Channel


Under Attack by Spammers

November 12th, 2008 · 5 Comments · Uncategorized

I’ve recently seen a sharp increase in spam comments which are getting past the Akismet filter. I may need to take defensive action if it keeps up, such as moderating comments or using some kind of CAPTCHA. Please let me know if you have any suggestions. I don’t like anything that impedes the flow of legitimate comments, but I imagine that spam comments are just as annoying to you as they are to me.

5 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Daniel Lemire // Nov 13, 2008 at 12:41 am

    I know some people consider my roman numeral CAPTCHA annoying, but writing a semi-elaborate, custom CAPTCHA is what kept the spam away.

    I still get some, but it is manually entered and low volume.

    Maybe we should start competing for fun and original CAPTCHAs. What about a CAPTCHA workshop?

  • 2 Daniel Tunkelang // Nov 13, 2008 at 2:39 pm

    Well, the spam wave seems to have subsided for now, so I’ll hope it was just a freak occurrence. The roman numeral CAPTCHA is mildly annoying (I tend to cut and paste into a Google search to use their calculator), but obviously preferable to drowning in spam. I’ll take it one day at a time.

    As for fun and original CAPTCHAs, this sounds like something Luis Von Ahn or his students might/should be working on. Not that more of us can’t play too.

  • 3 Brian Davson // Nov 14, 2008 at 9:33 am

    You should know that there have been a couple of workshops on this topic. See for one organized by my colleagues.

  • 4 Daniel Tunkelang // Nov 14, 2008 at 9:43 am

    Brian, thanks for the link! Of course, my more immediate mundane concern is how much that work has translated into easily installed WordPress plug-ins. But I’m intrigued by the research and will check it out.

  • 5 Fight the Spammers That Be! | The Noisy Channel // Nov 16, 2008 at 11:46 am

    […] loves company, so I’m reassured to know that I’m not the only recent victim of the uptake in spam. Matt Hurst reports that Political Streams has recently been hit with a lot of LiveJournal spam. […]

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